I have a new obsession – watching bees buzzing around my garden.
Over the past few weeks I have spent probably longer than I would like to admit sitting outside being mesmerised by bees.
The lavender bush and the rhododendron bush have been their favourite hangouts and everyday there have been scores of them hovering around.
If I am honest I actually find their buzzing noise rather hypnotic and oddly soothing.
But due to land development and the excessive use of pesticides, these little black and yellow insects have been in decline over the last few years.
But why is the shortage of bees such a problem for the world? Bees are important because they pollinate plants. If bees did not pollinate, the world would suffer a huge environmental, ecological and agricultural change. In short plant species which rely on bees for pollination would not exist, having a huge knock on effect to humans.
- Honey bees — wild and domestic — perform about 80 percent of all pollination worldwide.
- A single bee colony can pollinate 300 million flowers each day.
- Grains are primarily pollinated by the wind, but fruits, nuts and vegetables are pollinated by bees.
- Seventy out of the top 100 human food crops — which supply about 90 percent of the world’s nutrition — are pollinated by bees.
This is my favourite photo of a bee that I took. It is not particularly in focus, but take a look at how much pollen it has collected in its pollen sacks. This fat bumblebee was carrying so much pollen on its legs it could hardly fly. I’m guessing a the hive must be very very near our house.
Some of my Bee Sketches
Campaigns to help Save the bees
Greenpeace have been running a hugely successful ‘Save Our Bees’ campaign
- Ban the seven most dangerous pesticides.
- Protect pollinator health by preserving wild habitat.
- Restore ecological agriculture.
How can you help the bees in your gardens
Here are some basic ways which can help you attract bees to your garden
- Planting wildflowers, fruits, vegetables and sunflowers.
- Letting your yard grow a little wild.
- Providing water and shelter for bees.
- Stop using pesticides of any kind.